Gareth Evans is no longer developing the Deathstroke movie. Before Joe Manganiello’s on-screen debut as the DC villain in Justice League, news broke out that The Raid filmmaker was being eyed to helm a planned standalone movie centering on the character. But after a year since he reportedly boarded the movie, Evans reveals that he hasn’t “had any conversation about that project for a long time now.”
Manganiello was originally cast to play the character in The Batman standalone back when Ben Affleck was still supposed to direct and star in the film. But things have drastically changed since then with Matt Reeves stepping in with a fresh narrative. That put the character’s fate in the DCEU in limbo, and it seems like even his planned solo movie’s future is also uncertain
Speaking with ComicBook, Evans cleared the air on the status of the Deathstroke film by opening up on his involvement on the project. But while he was at one point attached to it, having separate conversations with folks at DC, as well as Manganiello, the director shared that he’s currently not actively developing the movie.
“I had a phone call which I think was publicized a bit, about Deathstroke with DC. We talked about that before, we had a few conversations. One of the guys at DC and at Warner Brothers, one with Joe, who has been on the character for some time now, who is super passionate about that character, by the way. I’ve never met anyone who knows more about their character.
“I was feeling my way around it and did a bit of research and read a couple of those comic books. I started to dig in to the origin stories. I like to figure out what the origin of a character is and what shapes them, what paints them as a personality. There’s been a few iterations, actually, of his origin, which is interesting to see. There was the original way his character was created and then there’s been a few creative licenses taken in terms of how he lost his eye, for example, and stuff like that. So, it was an interesting sort of experience.
“Nothing really went beyond those conversations. I haven’t heard anything for a really long time. To be honest, every time I see an article written I keep wanting to ask, ‘Okay, what is it you guys know that I don’t know?’ Because I haven’t heard anything for a good while yet. So I don’t know if that will ever come back full circle at some point. But I know I haven’t had any conversation about that project for a long time now.”
According to the last update from Manganiello with regard to the supposed DC standalone, the project is still “in the works.” What’s unknown is whether or not Evans was still in on the film when he made those comments considering that he shared that two months ago. Perhaps things changed behind-the-scenes over at Warner Bros. about the film, but regardless of its current status, one thing is certain: Evans is no longer involved in it.
Following his surprise appearance during the end credit scene for Justice League, many were immediately convinced that it was a set-up for a possible Legion of Doom movie in the future. But that idea doesn’t seem like happening anytime soon after the ensemble flick didn’t exactly perform well at the box office, not to mention the bleak future with regard to characters like Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) who is mainly linked with Superman (Henry Cavill). The villain could’ve also been included in The Batman, but since that’s tipped to focus on a younger version of the Caped Crusader, chances of Manganiello’s version of the bad guy is very slim given the established timeline. At this point, it’s best for fans to just wait for an official announcement from Warner Bros. and DC Films with regard to the Deathstroke film, as well as any other rumored movie in their roster.
KEY RELEASE DATES
Aquaman (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018
Shazam! (2019) release date: Apr 05, 2019
Joker (2019) release date: Oct 04, 2019
Wonder Woman 2 (2019) release date: Nov 01, 2019
Birds of Prey (2020) release date: Feb 07, 2020